North Shore - Bell's Trailhead to Cougar Overlook Short Loop

Singing for a Mate
Very vocal "desert cardinal" singing for a mate. Spring is here!
User: MikeHikes - 3/30/2024

Location: San Angelo State Park

Rating: 4stars
Difficulty: 1star  Solitude: 4stars
Miles Hiked: 8.10 Miles  Elapsed Time: 4 hours, 15 minutes


Leg 1 -  Bell's Trailhead > Shady Trail > Trailhead to Trailhead (S) > Rocky Creek Trail > park service road (S) > North Scenic Loop > South Slick Rock > Lower Ghost Camp > River Bend Campground > Lower Ghost Camp (S) > Trailhead to Trailhead (S) > Cougar Overlook    3.4 miles

Leg 2 -  Cougar Overlook > park service road (W) > River Bend (N) > Badlands > park service road (NW) > Big Hill > park service road (NW) > Dinosaur Trail (N) > Bell's Trailhead    4.7 miles

Temp started at 60, ended at 76.  Overcast then mostly sunny. Winds 0-5mph at the start but incerased to 10-15mph SW breeze.

A leisure hike along dry, easy to see and traverse trails.  I saw three Axis does near Shady Trail on the opposite bank.  This seems to be a fairly consistent spot to see these runaway deer.  At one time, there was a very large antlered Axis buck but I didn't see him today.

I also spotted a Great Horned Owl neat the Rocky CReek trailhead.  I took a few photos and he moved closer so I got a few more and he decided that was enough and departed.  There were numerous sparrows, Mockingbirds and a few others spotted as well.  On the return leg, I saw a male Pyrrhuloxia singing for a mate (photo attached).


Info kiosk and a bicycle repair station are available at Bell's Trailhead.  Water and shade available at nearby campsites.

Water, shade, info kiosk and dry toilets available at River Bend Campground.

Shade, info kiosk and a bicycle repair station available at Cougar Overlook.

Log Photos
Singing for a Mate
Area around San Angelo State Park
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